Saturday, February 17, 2018


The Express played one of their more complete outings in recent weeks and came away with a 3-1 win over the Mainland division champion Prince George Spruce Kings. Click here for boxscore

The win snapped a 7 game losing streak for the Express.

Saturday night the Express dug in to play a game that saw them make smart plays in the defensive zone that translated into success in the other end.

In the Express crease Brock Hamm was in fine form. One of his best saves of the first period came on an Express power play to deny Dustin Manz on a shorthanded breakaway.

Late in the first period the Express opened the scoring starting in the defensive zone with Christian Sanda digging out a puck then feeding Eric Linell who fired a stretch pass that only Josh Wildauer could get a stick on then he fought off a Spruce Kings defender and roofed his 10th of the season.

The penalty killing was another aspect of the Express game that was on the mark. They killed off three Prince George powerplays in the first 21 minutes of the game to carry the one goal lead into the opening minutes of the 2nd period. Prince George finished 0 for 5 on the power play.

Colby Pederson did a lot of heavy lifting for the Express to battle for pucks through the night. He made a good play along the wall in the defensive zone to bounce off the glass to himself then rush it into the Spruce Kings zone then fire a perfect pass on the tap of Haydn Delorme racing to the net for a 2-0 Express lead.

The lead stood into the third period. The Express had to contend with a Spruce Kings team that works to control the puck in the offensive zone hoping to lead to breakdowns and chances. From a defensive stand point the Express did a good job of managing the Spruce Kings attack.

With just under 6 to play the Spruce Kings finally broke through when Dylan Anhorn from the blueline found Kyle Johnson alone in front of the Express net and he roofed the puck over a sprawled Hamm to break his shutout.

As the click ticked down the Express did get some shifts in the Spruce Kings end to help tick down the clock.

Then with just over a minute to play and the extra attacker on the ice for Prince George, the Express won a defensive zone draw and rimmed around the boards to centre ice eventually getting into the Prince George end where Christian Sanda sealed the game with a empty net goal. Sanda finished with a goal and an assist.

The Express salvaged the final game of the season series against the Spruce Kings. In fact the Express picked up their first win in two years vs. Prince George. It was Valentines day 2016 the last time the Express defeated the Spruce Kings who were 12-0-1 against the Express dating back to the start of last season.

Sunday the Express will play their final road game of the season with a visit to Langley. It the first game of a home and home with the Express wrapping up the regular season Friday night when they host the Rivermen. 

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